Interview with Dr. Galitzer in Ageless, by Suzanne Somers
The following excerpt is an interview with Dr. Michael Galitzer conducted by Suzanne Somers, which is featured in her latest book, Ageless.
Interview – "Ageless"
Dr. Galitzer is my personal anti-aging endocrinologist. His approach to medicine is to increase energy in the body. The question we all have to ask ourselves is not how old you are, but how young is your energy? It was Dr. Galitzer who introduced me to this concept. He practices energy medicine in Los Angeles and Santa Barbara, California. He is on the cutting-edge curve of the latest and greatest medical breakthroughs. It is a privilege to be taken care of by this kind, interested, and motivational doctor. Be sure to read the interview with "Wendy" to see the kind of work Dr. Galitzer is doing.
Suzanne Somers: Thank you for you time again. You always have so much to say because you are naturally curious. I think curiosity is a great plus for a doctor because you keep up with all the latest information. But I have noticed with other doctors that Anti-aging medicine gets a bad rap. Even though you are a western trained physician, other branches of medicine dismiss anti-aging medicine as though it's not really medicine
Dr. Michael Galitzer: Well I say anti-aging medicine is very real. Anti-aging medicine is trying to increase the energy of the body. Lack of energy is associated with the aging process, so what I do, in order to regenerate the cells and tissues of the body, you need to first restore the body's physiology. Optimum functioning of the metabolism, cells and organs is the goal. In order to regenerate, you need three things; energy, information, and you need a healthy endocrine system. A perfect example of this is our kids; they have tons of energy. This is why homeopathy works so well with kids, because homeopathy is information. When you combine energy and information, you have health.
Suzanne Somers: What do you mean by information?
Dr. Michael Galitzer: Information is a message. A message may tell a cell or organ to move into a regenerative mode. Frequencies and vibrations are also examples of information. RNA is information. Homeopathy is an example of how a different remedy can provide different information to the body. Traditional medicine uses homeopathy every day in treating patients. Nitroglycerin 1/150, given sub-lingually to treat angina, is an example of a drug prepared in a dilution that is really homeopathic.
Suzanne Somers: Yes, but in this country people find that homeopathy takes too long. We like faster results. What do you say to that?
Dr. Michael Galitzer: when you give a child with tons of energy the right homeopathic, they are better within hours. The difficult thing as we get older we have less and less energy. The challenge as an anti-aging physician is how do you increase the energy with older people? How do you get them to have more energy?
I use a lot of intra-venous therapies, like intra-venous Vitamin C, and intra-venous glutathione. Those are great ways to increase energy. Herbs also increase energy. Improving the quality of their sleep increases energy.
BioIdentical hormones increase energy. The real key is energy.
Traditional medicine uses Thyroid hormones to help people increase their metabolic rate and their energy. Medicine also uses adrenal hormones, - cortisol, prednisone etc. to affect both the energy and the inflammatory condition of the body
In anti-aging medicine we use BioIdentical estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone to help restore energy. Growth hormone promotes regeneration once the energy is there. Once we are able to increase energy in a person, we can then start the process of regenerating their body.
Suzanne Somers: Why do we lose energy as we age? Where does it go?
Dr. Michael Galitzer: It's spiritual and physical. Physically we are exposed to way too many toxins from the environment. We are exposed to heavy metals; lead, cadmium, mercury, from both the environment and leakage from silver-amalgam dental fillings. This exposure is a major, major problem. As an example, I saw a patient, who, two years ago, had accidentally swallowed a mercury filling while eating, and about a year later he started having rectal bleeding. His doctors didn't know what was wrong with him. They finally had to take him to the operating room, and when they opened him up there was this huge cancer in the small intestine, and inside the cancer was the mercury filling. Mercury is the number one toxin, even more significant than lead. As a society we are inundated with heavy metals, and it's making us sick. In anti-aging medicine we work to detoxify the body of these heavy metals.
Suzanne Somers: Then why are dentists still allowed to use mercury?
Dr. Michael Galitzer: Well, in Sweden, it's been banned. It's funny, in the 1800's the dentists who put mercury in people's teeth were called quacks. And now in the 2000's the dentists who want to take them out are called quacks.
Suzanne Somers: I have a friend who is a famous clarinetist who only eats sushi and raw fish. He lives a healthy lifestyle, but his doctors have found so much mercury in his system that he has been advised to never eat fish again. Why are fish so loaded with mercury?
Dr. Michael Galitzer: It has to be from the environmental toxins. It's a huge problem and is affecting the health of everyone on the planet.
Suzanne Somers: You mean from dumping, or from sewage?
Dr. Michael Galitzer: Absolutely. Dumping and environmental toxins. Tuna and Swordfish are loaded with mercury. Your musician friend should take chlorella, before he eats the fish; the chlorella will help bind the mercury in the gut. In doing this work I have found that certain people are mercury excreters. For some reason that no one understands, these people can be exposed to mercury but it's not a problem. But there is a whole other group that is non-excreters. The people who I see in my office who complain of chronic illnesses are non-excreters. With these people, taking out the mercury fillings in their teeth is crucial. After they change the fillings, we use chelation to pull out the mercury from its binding sites in the body.
Suzanne Somers: Explain chelation
Dr. Michael Galitzer: Chelation is a chemical process in which a substance is used to bind molecules, such as metals or minerals, and hold them tightly, so that they can be removed from the body. In medicine, chelation has been scientifically proven to rid the body of excess or toxic metals. The toxic heavy metal mercury, binds with sulfur; lead binds with EDTA. So in mercury chelation we use sulfur compounds that bind to mercury. We frequently do a urine test to look at how much mercury came out. We routinely find uranium in the urine, and arsenic...all these are part of the contamination of the water supply. This is a problem; public water is not only drinking water, but people shower and bathe in it. So consequently we use chelation to clean up our bodies. If a person has cancer and mercury toxicity I wouldn't try to get the mercury fillings out while they are being given radiation or chemotherapy. I would first neutralize mercury within the body, and I would do this with Selenium, 200 to 400 micrograms a day.
Suzanne Somers: Should people take selenium every day. I have been putting this amount in my morning smoothie for years. I read that it has anti-cancer and anti-viral effects.
Dr. Michael Galitzer: It's a very good idea, as long as you don't go too high. In the stores it usually comes in 200 micrograms and once a day is good.
Suzanne Somers: It's my understanding that when taking a bath with bath salts and oils and whatever, that we take in 80% of that water transdermally. But what are we supposed to do, bathe in Evian?
Dr. Michael Galitzer: No, Evian's not good water. We found that out about 15 years ago. Fiji and Volvic water are much better. But of course you wouldn't be able to bathe in it. It's a challenge. That's why I do the work I do... As an anti-aging doctor we work to reverse the harmful effects of living in this millennium. What we can do is put EDTA into the bath to pull lead out of the body. It is known that people today have 1000 times the lead levels in their body compared to 100 years ago. So you can actually get a chelation while taking a bath.
Suzanne Somers: Where does one get EDTA and what is it?
Dr. Michael Galitzer: EDTA is ethylene diamine tetra-acetic acid. It is used as a food preservative in order to keep packaged food on the shelves longer. EDTA is a synthetic, or man-made, amino acid that was initially developed for intra-venous use. EDTA was first used in the 1940's for the treatment of heavy metal poisoning. EDTA chelation removes heavy metals and minerals from the body such as lead, iron, copper, and calcium, and is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for use in treating lead poisoning and toxicity from other heavy metals. Other ways of taking EDTA include EDTA chewing gum, swallowing it as a capsule or powder, or rectally as a suppository . Any way that we can pull these heavy metals out of the system is a major plus. You can do infrared saunas, which seems to help pull toxins out of the body; colon hydrotherapy helps the colon detoxify. Then there are herbs and homeopathics to try to neutralize the pesticides and the chemicals.
Suzanne Somers: So when a person comes to you who is healthy and pro-active about their health, which are the people who will be reading this book, who just want to stay on track , what do you do for them?
Dr. Michael Galitzer: We first do a bio-impedance test, which is a one minute test that analyzes cellular health. It measures body fat, body water, we want to know their basal metabolic rate- how many calories do they need to eat in order to lose weight. We want to know the percentage of water that is inside the cell; healthy people have 60% of their body water inside their cells, and 40% outside their cells. This test can determine the health of cell membranes and rapidity of cell regeneration.
Then we do heart rate variability to evaluate the autonomic nervous system. We monitor their heart rate as they lie down for 3 minutes and then stand for 4 minutes. This gives me an idea about how strong is their adrenal reserve, the level of stress in this automatic or sub-conscious nervous system, and also helps to identify their metabolic type.
After that we run a test called Bio-Electric Vincent Test, which measures their blood, saliva, and urine in order to analyze how acidic the body is, and the efficiency of the liver in getting rid of toxins.
In the 50's the French government was looking at why different regions of France had greatly different incidences of cancer. So they hired a hydrodrologist, Louis Claude Vincent, to investigate, and he concluded that where the soil and water were the healthiest there was no cancer, and of course where the soil and water was unhealthy there was a very high incidence of cancer. Basically, just like the farmers need healthy soil to grow healthy crops, we need a healthy interior terrain to be healthy.
Saliva basically tells us about the health of the lymphatic and digestive systems. Venous blood tells us what is coming out of the cells, and urine tells us how well our kidneys excrete toxins.
What we find from these tests are people who think they are healthy usually have too many acids in the body and the blood pH is too high. What that means is the liver's not filtering well. The liver's job is to detoxify the blood. A healthy liver is able to clean the blood and consequently people are able to sleep through the night. People who have a liver that is not working well frequently wake up about 1 or 2 or 3 in the morning. The first four letters in LIVER tell it all.
Suzanne Somers: You give me liver drops to detoxify; is there another way?
Dr. Michael Galitzer:Yes take a lemon and squeeze the juice out of both halves in 8 ounces of water every morning. That will help a lot. Plus Carrots, beets, zucchini, squash, watercress, artichoke are all liver friendly. That combined with herbs and homeopathics that stimulate liver drainage will greatly help almost everyone.
Suzanne Somers: I am very involved with good diet; from a doctors point of view how important is eating right?
Dr. Michael Galitzer: Well it's like your body is a Ferrari and you've got to use high octane fuel in your Ferrari. Likewise, your physical body needs superb fuel. Balanced eating, real food, fruits and vegetables are critical. Organic is best. Meat, chicken, fish without antibiotics and hormones, chickens that are allowed to roam free.
Suzanne Somers: Is that the most important thing... in your words the fuel you put into the tank'?
Dr. Michael Galitzer: More than anything, the biggest obstacle in people's health is being in emotional distress. It seems to me that every patient I see tells me about how stressed they are. Stress is not really what people think it is. Stress occurs when we perceive ourselves in a state of emotional discomfort. Most people view stress as something from the outside that happens to them Most of us are creating this state of discomfort as a result of the undesirable meaning we give to life experiences. Learning to de-stress is a challenge. Everybody has taken on more than they can take on and consequently they are driven by what they have taken on. So you can detoxify and exercise, but getting your emotional/mental state under control is most important. You've got to focus on what makes you feel good. Then use that feel good energy to solve your problems. You've got to express love to people or someone or something. Love your wife, your kids, your dog, your patients. Love the Lakers. If you ever need a refresher course, listen to the Beatles "All You Need Is Love" And then do what kids do all the time...imagine. Imagine being absolutely healthy, every day of your life, imagine living to 100 with energy, See yourself as an ambassador of longevity to the world. Have fun in your life, whatever it is you are doing, your work, your family, your friends. Do what kids do...have fun. Some people say there is no fun in their life because there's no one to have fun with, you know, the lonely people out there. I tell them to make a list of all the fun things they can do by themselves.... basic things; being grateful for your life, your family, concentrating on the energy of the universe moving through you. If you can do the basics you can get your head and your emotions together. Then longevity will have a way of following.
Suzanne Somers: Yes but if someone has run themselves into the ground,, eaten badly, smoked, consumed a lot of alcohol, stayed up late, overworked all their lives and then they come to you, are you able to reverse that person if they are willing to make that change with you?
Dr. Michael Galitzer: yes definitely. There's never a lost cause. There is always a way. I believe everybody out there can get better. A lot of people ask what's more important, the patients belief in the doctor or the doctor's belief in the patient and I know it's the doctors belief in the patient. That's because when the doctor believes in the patient, the patient gets it immediately. Once the patient gets it, all things are possible.
Suzanne Somers: What I like about the new doctors such as yourself, the cutting-edge doctors, is that patient and doctor are now integrated
Dr. Michael Galitzer: The art in this form of medicine is to meet the patient at their level and move them up slowly or sometimes quickly depending on where they are. With some of my patients, I have to get down to a junk food level and show them a piece of paper on how the Highway Patrol uses coca-cola to take blood stains off the highway, and things like that.
Everybody progresses at their own pace. We go over a plan for them. I tell them, look I don't expect you to stop the cokes and junk food tomorrow. It's a process. Start doing little things and you'll find you are feeling better. Then when they revert to their old ways and realize that they feel badly, they begin to find their way. It's a process.
Suzanne Somers: so by the time a patient comes to you they've all been around the block with traditional medicine and they are pretty desperate for information.
Dr. Michael Galitzer: That's a plus for me because they are open to new things. The majority of my patients are women because of your book "The Sexy Years". Women are desperate to find a solution to their hormone issues and we both know BioIdentical hormone replacement is the only way and it works.
Suzanne Somers: Yes but I don't believe that people truly realize the major impact of blowing out their major hormones. I'm talking about the adrenals,, insulin, and thyroid. Women know about the minor hormones, estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, and others. It seems to me that anti-aging medicine deals with the major hormones first.
Dr. Michael Galitzer: Well as I see it it's like a basketball game. The 6 players on the team are testosterone, estrogen, progesterone, pancreas, thyroid and adrenal. My job is getting those players to play well together. That's the key. That's the art form. I use muscle testing and heart rate variability to determine their metabolic type, by the response to sugar. Metabolic typing is different than blood typing. Blood typing is genetically based; you come into the world with a certain blood type and therefore certain foods are okay. Metabolic typing is something that seems to occur in the first 12 years of your life. Your type is set and frequently it is set as a result of a major emotional theme in one's early life. There is the slow oxidizer, or the pancreas types whose major emotional issue is love; then the sympathetic type, or the thyroid type, the major issue is anger, and the parasympathetic type( adrenal ), whose major emotion is fear. And in the fast oxidizer (growth hormone), the major issue is anxiety.
Suzanne Somers: this is sounding like gobbly-gook. Come back to earth...
MG; okay of those types, 50% seem to be adrenal, 25% are thyroid, 20% are pancreas, and 5% are growth hormone...meaning that under stress this is their area of weakness, and by optimizing each person's key hormonal gland, they can regain their health. Once I identify their type, I can hone in and strengthen their weakest element and build them up. Otherwise they would just keep getting weaker and weaker in those areas. This cuts it off at the pass. The trouble that would have befallen them doesn't have a chance to take hold.
Suzanne Somers: Okay I get that. Anti-aging medicine is preventative in it's nature. The diseases we normally would expect from aging do not have to be part of our history because we are dealing with it from the moment that a sign of weakness is taking hold. It seems to me that the patient is part of the process by being symptom aware, much like women need to do regarding their hormone imbalances. When I have an itchy leg, a symptom I never would have thought to call my doctor over such a trivial thing, yet an itchy leg for a menopausal woman is one of the many signs that your hormones are not in balance. If a patient called you and said that he was constipated and / or had cold hands and feet, would you see that as a symptom that his or her thyroid needed further evaluation?
Dr. Michael Galitzer: Yes. The patient must keep me informed about the smallest symptoms. This is your body talking and I am not able to 'hear' unless the patient keeps me filled in. It's very exciting because I am able to make them feel well pretty quickly when we work together like this.
Suzanne Somers: I don't think most people are aware of what well means. We are so accustomed to taking antacids for stomach upset, aspirin for headaches, we don't pay attention to the fact that we might be sweating too much or have dry skin, or constipation, or aching joints. This is just the tip of the iceberg. I use my healthy prime, of 35 to 40 as my benchmark.
I didn't have any of these conditions then, so with this new superb medicine, I am aware when I am not feeling at optimum. That's when I call you.
Dr. Michael Galitzer: And it's an honor to take care of you.
Suzanne Somers: So anti-aging medicine is an art form because there are no set rules. It's the intuitiveness of the doctor who in turn must be able to identify the different metabolic types.
Dr. Michael Galitzer: That's where I have taken it. Everyone looks at it differently. Many doctors will want to use blood tests and look at the hormones and figure out which is low and high and make corrections. But I feel that also you have got to figure out who is the star player (metabolic type). Half the time it's the adrenals that are burnt out from everyone's stressful lifestyle. Once I strengthen the adrenals, balancing their hormones becomes much easier. Remember adrenals are the orchestra leader. When they are off the whole body is out of tune. The adrenals are the body's response to stress, whereas the sex hormones (estrogen, testosterone, progesterone) represent reproduction. You can live without your sex hormones; you can't live without your adrenals. Survival is a much higher priority than reproduction. So when the body's under stress and the adrenals are tired, the body will convert estrogen to DHEA, testosterone to DHEA and progesterone to cortisol.
Suzanne Somers: To survive?
Dr. Michael Galitzer: At any cost as the sex hormones go down to maintain survival.
Suzanne Somers: Because now is not the time to make a baby.
Dr. Michael Galitzer: Absolutely. So once we've identified the star player and strengthened it, we have one last component and that's the coach. The coach is the leader; the coach has the vision, he's got to make the players play well together, he's got to inspire the players and that's the liver. When the 'team' is in a successful place and you keep the 'coach' (which is the liver), happy, that's when people show great results.
Suzanne Somers: So when a woman comes in and she's all out of whack because her minor hormones are gone, you first deal with the major hormones. That makes sense because I know from my own research that if one hormone is off the entire hormonal system is off. If the adrenals are the orchestra leader, trying to balance the sex hormones of estrogen and progesterone would be futile until you get the adrenals straightened
Dr. Michael Galitzer: Yes or any of the other major hormones. Because what I am starting to see is that these different metabolic types seem to dictate our reactions to how you are going to give progesterone or estrogen.
Suzanne Somers: What form of transport do you prefer, creams, or drops or capsules?
Dr. Michael Galitzer: As a rule, I prefer to do the cream, with every pulse of the blood it moves through the fat base. Most of us have such toxic livers, that by the time a capsule moves through all the toxic sludge in the liver it loses a lot of it's effect.
Suzanne Somers: Do you feel that men need testosterone replacement as they age?
Dr. Michael Galitzer: I believe they do. When I measure men's testosterone levels, there's a huge range from 200 to 900. But when I measure free testosterone, which represents the amount available to the tissues, I almost always find it low. I also find it important to treat the prostate at the same time. I give them herbs, saw palmetto, and the extract of giant redwoods. Redwood trees live forever. Redwood extract seems to be a male tonic. It seems to help the prostate. I also give them nutrients for the prostate, Vitamin E, Selenium, fish oils, zinc, and lycopene. We know that testosterone gets converted to estrogen, especially in men that are overweight, by an enzyme called aromatase. We try to block the aromatase with chrysin in a cream form, also using zinc and Vitamn C. By doing this we are maximizing testosterone, to prevent its conversion to estrogen, and at the same time treat the prostate.
Suzanne Somers: But why do you think men are so reluctant to take care of themselves?
Dr. Michael Galitzer: It's part macho image you know for the same reason that men don't ask for directions when they're lost.
We now have the ability to help both men and women in a way never before possible. Those who are taking advantage of it such as your husband and yourself are reaping the results and rewards. But anything new is subject to attack. I say better to try anti-aging medicine than stay with certain stone-age concepts that may no longer apply to health.
Suzanne Somers: I agree, we can't be treating ourselves the same way we have for the last 50 years. It's a new age, and the only way to fight the environmental pollution and the stress is to embrace anti-aging medicine.
Dr. Michael Galitzer: Well I say we are all going to live to be 100...and when I ask my patients if they want that, they all say yes, but not if they are in a wheelchair or nursing home. People are now starting to realize that they are going to live longer. Everything is going to be turned upside down. They are not going to be able to retire at 65 any more. Life insurance is going to have to change drastically. There will be greater use of growth hormone in the future, when given at the proper time Growth hormone enhances body proteins. It uses up the fat stores, and it conserves carbohydrates. Growth hormone scares people, because they think that it is going to cause cancer. Actually it's a metabolic hormone. It's like turbo-charging your car's engine; you wouldn't do it if all 4 wheels weren't on the car. Once the four hormonal wheels - sex hormones, insulin, thyroid, and adrenals – are working optimally, growth hormone will take you to the next level of health.
Suzanne Somers: But one shouldn't take HGH if they are not low or missing.
Dr. Michael Galitzer: Right; you should have a fasting blood test first. But growth hormone goes down with age, so most people's growth hormone levels are low. When they are in a healthy range they are usually between 200 and 300 ng/ml.
Suzanne Somers: What else does growth hormone do for you? My son, Bruce injects HGH every day. His blood tests showed his level was very low. He loves the way he feels on it, and also says he has a six-pack abdomen since he's been injecting.
Dr. Michael Galitzer: Yes that's one of the great side benefits. HGH promotes wound healing, it improves vitality, energy, reduces body fat, increases lean body mass, strengthens muscles, and improves skin elasticity. Different people age differently. One person who is 80 years old may have 90 year old bones, but a 50 year old mind. Katherine Graham comes to mind, sharp as a tack upstairs, but one fall playing tennis and she was dead a few weeks later. When you fall and break a hip a lot of people just don't make it. They get immobilized and their mind can't handle the immobilization. They get pneumonia from the immobilization and once that happens on top of the hip fracture it's really tough.
But the real key is that different organs age differently. My job is to find out which of your organs is aging the quickest. So something that improves protein regeneration, like growth hormone, will find it's way. Stem cell therapy is the big hope. You can inject stem cells intra-venously in order to helpthe brain, heart, and other key organs. And then, we have our own stem cells....how do we mobilize our own stem cells and how do we get them to repair the cells of the body. These are some examples of where this is all going. This is including and beyond hormones. Look, if you don't have any energy, you can't get positive thoughts in your head. The beauty of hormones is that it picks up your energy and once you start thinking better all sorts of positive things happen.
Suzanne Somers: Isn't it in a state of hormonal imbalance that disease can take hold?
Dr. Michael Galitzer: Yes, and if you look at the progression of disease as you grow older you're exposed to more toxins. Then the liver and the kidney and the lymph no longer have the strength to pull the toxins out. Then toxins start to accumulate in the body. Then the liver and the kidney and lymphs call out to the endocrine glands for reinforcements. And they say to the glands, come on, secrete more hormones and make us work a little stronger. Then the glands say, okay, so the glands start secreting more adrenal hormones and thyroid hormones, but eventually the glands get tired. Ultimately, what happens is you get a toxic body with very weak hormonal glands. And that's your setup for chronic illness.
Suzanne Somers: So going all the way back to where we started, by detoxifying the body of heavy metals, lead, mercury and others, by strengthening the weakest major hormones and organs, whether they be adrenal, thyroid, or the kidneys or the pancreas, by replacing lost minor hormones, we can cut off at the pass the inevitable chronic illnesses that we were destined to have. That's how anti-aging medicine works. We don't have to be sick just because we are old.
Dr. Michael Galitzer: Correct. It takes effort and a knowledgeable doctor but the results are fantastic. You have to start as soon as you recognize the validity of all of this. No matter how skeptical you are, we all want to feel good. We all want to have energy. We all want to jump out of bed in the morning. We all want to do those things. We want to see our kids and our grandkids, so this kind of medicine can give you what you really want. I say just stay open. Then go find somebody who can really help you. Ultimately, you have to reorient a bit, and look at your life. The measure of your life will not be in what you accumulate, but more about what you give away. That's the key to living, to realize we all are after the same thing. We all want love, energy, and we all want to be happy.
Suzanne Somers: I agree. Thank you.